How often do you say ‘God bless you’ and mean it
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
Contrary to what people say when you sneeze your heart does not stop. To say God bless you when somebody sneezes can be attributed to the plague. One of the signs of the plague was coughing and sneezing, and it is alleged that Pope Gregory VII advocated saying, “God bless you” after someone sneezed, expecting that this plea would save them from harm, an otherwise assured demise.
In this case I am saying God bless you to Congressman Alcee L. Hastings of Florida’s 20th district, Democratic party.
I have been the recipient of many a good fortunes and the Honorable Congressman Hastings presented me with yet another when he invited me to be his guest at the 113th Congress Address to the Congress on the State of the Union(SOTU) from President Barack Obama on Jan. 28, 2014.
As I sat 13 people to the left of the First Lady, I found myself to be speechless-can you imagine that? -me, speechless.
The awe of the splendor of this occasion presented me succumbed by the entire aura of the event.
Even before the night’s activity unfolded, I was stirred by the greetings that I received from the staff of Mr. Hastings; they treated me like I was somebody.
As they moved me into his office I felt as though I was in a historic gallery of artifacts and replicas of majestic moments caught in history with the great newsmakers of our times.
I even saw an early photo of young Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity men of Broward County when they each had hair-oh my what a shocking sight.
The congressman’s walls could compete with any museum.
After a couple of hours of entertaining my curator side, the congressman made his entrance. He immediately wanted to know how my family was and how his staff treated me and if I needed to have anything other than what they had already offered me.
To my surprise, he knew that today was our deadline day at the Westside Gazette, so he made available to me the use of his office as I needed to make sure that our deadline was met.
Aside from the alluring atmosphere, Congressman Has-tings is one of the hardest working people that I know; next to my wife.
His schedule is tighter than a fine watch and his movement is just as precise.
As he was winding down and getting ready for the SOTU Address, he gave me his personal tour of the items, photos and sentiments that decorated his walls, desks, each and every corner and floor. My excitement began to bubble all over again.
As we were leaving his office headed to the Address, I got a real good look at who this man, the Honorable Alcee Hastings, is.
Every person that we met along the way he greeted with a sincere, warm and genuine conversation no matter who they were; from the janitors to congress people. I say conversation because even in its brevity his message was conveyed: “I notice and appreciate you” and it resonated.
With each person that we met, if it was one it was 200, he proudly introduced me as his invited guest from the largest Black owned newspaper in his District.
Every hand that I embraced in meeting, I proudly reassured them that I was extremely honored and fortunate to be represented by such a caring, charismatic gentleman.
Because of the way that he carries himself and his work ethics, one would never associate anybody less who is in Mr. Hastings company and that is how he made me feel.
Yes the President’s SOTU Address was one of monumental proportions as he outlined his plan to move America forward in spite of the obvious obstinate opposition received from congress people that supposedly want the best for this country.
I, like many other people, would have liked his Address even more if he would have fist bumped with some of the confused real hard-sorta-kinda skinned some knuckles- you know what I’m saying.
Nevertheless I was happier than the First Lady when President Obama was elected the first time.
My congressman treated me like I was his first date from the time that I entered his office until he was personally sure that I was safe back where I was staying.
The climax of our “first date” was when he presented me with an autographed copy of Remarks of President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address “Opportunity For All”.
From the roots of my family tree, I will be forever grateful for the historic impact that the Honorable Congressman Alcee L. Hastings has allowed to be forever engraved in the pages of our family history!
God bless you and thank you to the Gentleman from Florida, Congressman Hastings.
Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work. 2 Thessalonians 2:16–17(NASB)